A Nod to Beckon Desire Burgers


5 large cloves garlic
3 teaspoons salt
3/4 cup + 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 lemon
7 ounce package fresh baby spinach leaves
1 bunch parsley – stems removed
1 14 ounce can artichoke heart quarters
1 small sweet onion (Vidalia-type)
2 lbs. ground chuck
1 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
9 ounces gorgonzola cheese
vegetable oil for oiling the grill
Kaiser Rolls



Preheat gas grill to medium-high, or prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill.

Peel and finely chop 3 large cloves garlic. Reserve one chopped clove. Halve and set aside 2 remaining cloves.

Measure salt into two portions, one of one teaspoon and the other portion of 2 teapooons. Reserve.

Divide extra virgin olive oil into three portions, one of 1/2 cup, one of 1 Tbsp. and one of 1/4 cup. Reserve.

Remove zest from lemon. Squeeze juice from lemon into small bowl. Reserve juice.

To make Spinach/Parsley Pesto, place 2 chopped garlic cloves, 1 teaspoon salt, the lemon zest, the fresh spinach leaves, the parsley and 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil into food processor. Process until well well blended. Remove 1/2 cup pesto from processor bowl. Set aside ’til serving.

Open and drain can of artichoke hearts. Add to the parsley/spinach pesto in the food processor. Pulse 3 or 4 times to coarsely chop artichoke hearts into the pesto. Set aside.

Mince small sweet onion. Any Vidalia, Walla-Walla, or other sweet-type onion will do. In a large bowl, combine onion, reserved 1 Tbsp. chopped garlic, reserved 2 tsp. salt, reserved one Tbsp. olive oil, reserved lemon juice, 2 lbs. ground chuck, and freshly ground black pepper. Mix thoroughly, without squeezing or compacting. Divide into 6 equal portions. Slice gorgonzola cheese into 1/8 thick slices. Divide into 6 equal portions.

To make the first burger, divide one of the 6 portions of meat mixture in two pieces. Gently form one half into a circle approximately 1/2 inch thick. Lightly press one of the 6 portions of gorgonzola cheese onto the meat circle, completely covering the meat to within 1/2 inch of the edge. Overlap cheese as necessary. Form the other half of the meat into another circle. Layer on top of the gorgonzola. Press to seal the edges of the patty. Repeat with the other 5 meat and cheese portions.
Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the burgers on the rack, cover and cook ’til meat is browned on the bottom – 3 to 4 minutes. Turn burgers once and continue cooking til done to taste 3 – 5 minutes for medium.

Split Kaiser Rolls. Brush cut sides with remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil. Place on outer edges of grill to lightly toast. Remove rolls from grill and rub with halves garlic cloves reserved from first step.

To assemble burgers, spread one/sixth of the Spinach/Parsley Pesto on the bottom half of each Kaiser Roll. Place a burger on the roll. Spread the burger with one/sixth of the Pesto and Artichoke Heart mixture. Place top of Kaiser Roll on all. Enjoy!